A unique story involving future developing technologies, Buddhist mythological occultism, wrapped together within a murder mystery. The acting is engaging and engrossing, with a stellar transformative performance from the leads. The convoluted story is well told and brings you along slowly enough that you don't get lost. However, the movie is shot with unnecessarily very dark tones, sometimes robbing the audience of seeing the subtle expressions from the actors. Some of the conversations were long with abnormally long pauses that tended to drag, which is not good for a two hour movie. Still, some enjoyable twists and turns.
For such a relatively small cast of criminals that are the subject of this movie, it is horribly convoluted. It really should not have been that tough to tell a coherent, chronological story. Yet, the incredibly poor editing chopped up the story into an incomprehensible mess. Also, the lighting for most of the shots, while trying to show the dark and dingy London underworld, ending up showing nothing. Most of the fights turned into just a bunch of men grunting and flashes of color. Finally, there were so many misplaced and irrelevant songs being played to slow motion, I thought I had mistakenly put on a musical. Waste of time.
The concept of filming an entire movie from the inside of a car has been done before, so that is not unique, but this movie does it well. I know that there needs to be tension built with the protagonist having something to lose, but does it always have to be the estranged family and a daughter. That bit of cliché, and all of the dialogue among the family members that goes along with it, really brings this movie down from the potential high that it started with. I just wish the moviemakers had come up with a more uniquely satisfying tension builder than this. It makes the ending disappointingly mundane.
A thoroughly entertaining geopolitical tale reminiscent of American Cold War era movies. It is interesting how the movie depicts a number of conflicting dichotomies among all the players. There is the pro-war/anti-war factions in both the North and South Korean governments, the competing and divergent interests among South Korea, the US and Japan, and the competing yet contradictory ideas for unification of the Korean peninsula. There is even the recurrence of the "Mutually Assured Destruction" (MAD) theory of the US v USSR cold war. That said, the movie could use some editing down, and the Bromance between the two leads is awkward and obviously contrived.
The CGI is phenomenal, but that is all there is. The dialogue is barely intelligible and, when it can be understood, makes very little sense other than a series of philosophical one-liners. The plot is a very familiar story of empires, chosen people with special talents and a resistance. It is a good thing that it is such a familiar theme. Anything more complex would have been completely lost in the miasma of digital destruction. Basically, just a series of video game cut-scenes strung together to make a movie.